This brief hijacking takes us on a different kind of tour: a Writer’s Blog Tour. It’s an interview, of sorts, about my blog and writing process. Although I often share a little bit about my offline life, this post includes a bit more about me – I’m Camille, the woman behind the blog.
I was nominated by Susan Kalasunas, the writer behind The History Tourist, one of my favorite blogs. Susan writes about historical sites as well, but she takes it a step further, by looking for an interactive experience to write about. She wants to experience history as a tourist. She recounts her experiences in a way that makes me want to visit each and every place she goes to!
And now for me….
What am I currently working on?
I’m currently working on catching up from my summer and fall travel. I recently began a series of posts about my Southern Oregon travels in August. Jon and I, along with his parents, did a tour of the Oregon Caves, hiked down to the bottom of Crater Lake and took the boat tour, and did a day of relaxing and wine tasting in historic Jacksonville, Oregon.
I’ll also be posting about our trip to Michigan in October. Mostly it was a family trip, but we managed to sneak off for a few days and do some sightseeing. In those few days, we toured two historic homes and a converted mental hospital, hiked at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, and sampled beer and wine from several local Michigan establishments.
Lastly, if Jon hadn’t poached the rest of the bottles from my mixed case of wine, I’d be posting reviews of those, but as it stands, I’m not sure I have any of them left. SIGH…There’s never a shortage of wine to comment on around here though!
How does my work differ from others in my genre?
My mother once famously described my travel style as “eclectic,” and I think this blog reflects that. I love history and historical sites, but I don’t really stick to one genre or experience. I love it all. Being one half of a duo though, I try hard to consider Jon in the travel planning. Although I could tour historic homes for a week straight, I think he would go crazy. So historic homes, prisons, battlefields, National Parks, cemeteries, boat rides, breweries, and quick stops to take pictures of quirky Americana on the roadside, they all make it on my list.
One thing that we seem to do differently is the pace of our travels. Both Jon and I work full-time and have a limited amount of time we can be away. And we live in a part of the country that is somewhat lacking in historical sites. So when we do travel, we really try to pack it in and make the most of our time! If I don’t come home from vacation feeling like I need a vacation, I haven’t done my duty.
Why do I write what I do?
I suppose I started the blog to share my experience. I figured if I created a written record of the wines I have loved, I might be able to remember them better. And my vacation series have become a way to remember the great vacations that Jon and I are fortunate to take. From the hotels to the restaurants, to all the fabulous places we go, I can look back and smile when I need a pick me up. Reading all the positive comments from all of you is the icing on the cake!
How does my writing process work?
I write for a living. In my day job though, the writing is sterile… focused on clarity… on standing up to a legal challenge. Union contracts, policies, grievance responses, separation agreements – those aren’t the kind of writing that make you want to reread it a year later and relive the warm memories. So this blog allows me to be quirky (my usual personality), to express my pet peeves, and to hopefully make you feel like you are here with me.
When I visit a historical site, I like to give my readers an overview of the place, so they know a little bit about it without having to Google it. Self-contained history, if you will. And I like to share my experience. Mostly I love everyplace I go, because I try to maintain a childlike wonder when I get to experience something new. But if there were too many bugs or the tour was too short or if you should get a hat with a chinstrap to prevent it from blowing off, I’ll pass that along to you too.
I take notes in a travel journal when Jon and I are traveling; I record the day and what we did and where we ate and what we had. Occasionally, I record prices or travel tips, but this really isn’t that kind of blog. I also collect brochures to take home with me so I can remember the details of the places we visited, and I always take to the internet when I’m writing a post.
Onward in the tour!
Sarah Angleton is a fiction writer and history enthusiast from Missouri. Her short stories have appeared in a number of anthologies and journals you’ve probably never read. Her first novel was recently accepted for publication by High Hill Press and may one day find a home on your bookshelf. In the meantime, Sarah blogs weekly as the Practical Historian, exploring the ways stories of the past intertwine with experiences of the present.
Kirsten is a wine blogger who fell in love with wine over 24 years ago, and has never fallen out of love. She’s a chronic CSW (that’s Certified Specialist of Wine) student, but can’t seem to reach the finish line. She started her blog as a way to be her own teacher, and teaches many of us along the way. She is tasting her way through the world according to wine, studying and learning about wine one bottle at a time. And then she blogs about it at The Armchair Sommelier.
In a previous life, Kirsten was a high school history teacher and a fundraiser for non-profit organizations. She’s a wife, and mom to 2 teenagers!
She is a student of photography and history, and takes some really great photos! And bonus — wine almost always allows her to incorporate both of those passions into her blog posts. She also loves to travel . . . the world’s a big place.
Thank you for coming along with me as I share three of my favorite blogs! Cheers!